The page features the officially published election results from the 10 presidential elections held in Iran since the establishment of the Islamic Republic. All data is from Iran’s Interior Ministry.
Scroll over the pie charts to get details on individual candidates election performance and political affiliation.
2009: Tenth Presidential Election
Turnout: 85.2 percent.
Voter turnout was heavy in this election, especially among those under 30 years old. Many Iranians who did not vote in the 2005 presidential election went to the polls amid a feeling that this election would matter. While Ahmadinejad claimed victory in this election, opposition candidates, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, disputed the results amid widespread allegations of vote rigging. They sought a fair re-vote. Their protest of the results helped spark 18-months of popular street protests and a subsequent crackdown by Iran’s government.
Since February, 2011, Mousavi and Karroubi – both accused of treason – have been under house arrest by order of Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei.
2005: Ninth Presidential Election
Turnout (first round): 62.84 percent.
Turnout (second round): 59.8 percent.
This contested presidential election was the first in the Islamic Republic to go to a second round. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad won the election in part because of the electorate’s growing frustration with both reformists (like Khatami) and clerics (like Rafsanjani).
During Ahmadinejad’s first-term, economic conditions worsened considerably, and social freedoms were reduced.
2001: Eighth Presidential Election
Turnout: 67.6 percent.
For the first time, the Guardian Council approved 10 candidates (including then incumbent President Khatami) to run. However, these 10 were chosen from a group of 817 people who had registered to run. Khatami won re-election.
1997: Seventh Presidential Election
Turnout: 79.9 percent.
Out of 238 registered people, the Guardian Council allowed four candidates to run. The clerical establishment supported the conservative speaker of parliament, Ali Akbar Nategh Nouri. However, the majority of the electorate voted for the dark-horse reformist candidate Mohammad Khatami, who won the election.
1993: Sixth Presidential Election
Turnout: 50.66 percent.
Out of 128 registered candidates, the Guardian Council only allowed four (including then incumbent President Rafsanjani) to run for office. Rafsanjani was re-elected.
1989: Fifth Presidential Election
Turnout: 54.5 percent.
This election followed the death the same year of the founder of the Islamic Republic, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. While 79 people registered to run for the office, the Guardian Council only allowed two candidates to contest the election. Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani won this election.
1985: Fourth Presidential Election
Turnout: 54.7 percent.
50 people registered to run for office in the 1985 election but the Guardian Council allowed only three candidates (including then incumbent President Khamenei). Khamenei won re-election.
1981: Third Presidential Election
Turnout: 74.2 percent.
After the assassination of Mohammad-Ali Rajaei, Ali Khamenei (Iran’s current Supreme Leader) was elected President of Iran in a landslide vote. Khamenei was the first cleric to serve in this office. Out of 46 people who registered to run for the presidency, the Guardian Council allowed four candidates to run.
1981: Second Presidential Election
Turnout: 64.2 percent.
After the removal of Banisadr, the parliament passed an important law requiring all candidates running for office to be vetted by the Guardian Council. Since this legislation, only a small group of candidates have been allowed to run in each of Iran’s subsequent elections.
The Guardian Council is an unelected body of 12 clerics and lawyers who have the authority to veto all electoral candidates and parliamentary decisions. Half the members of the Guardian Council are directly appointed by Iran’s Supreme Leader and the other half are appointed by him in a more indirect fashion.
In Iran’s second election of the Islamic Republic in 1981, the Guardian Council approved only four candidates out of 71 to run for the office.
Mohammad-Ali Rajaei won that election. Four weeks into his presidency, he was assassinated in a bombing.
1980: First Presidential Election
Turnout: 67.4 percent.
On January 25, 1980, Abolhassan Banisadr was elected the first president of the Islamic Republic of Iran. 18 months later, he was impeached by Iran’s parliament (known as the Majlis) for incompetence. On June 22, 1981, Ayatollah Khomeini dismissed Banisadr as president and ordered his arrest on charges of conspiracy and treason. Banisadr ultimately fled to France.
Until now, Banisadr’s election in 1980 was the only presidential contest in Iran in which the candidates running had not been screened by the powerful Guardian Council. More than 100 candidates contested that election.